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Greg Monroe's Ceiling


DetroitCity313
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I will admit, I did not think Monroe would progress this fast into his NBA career. The guy is making strides in literally every game he plays. Seems like he is working hard at every flaw in his game and is slowly correcting it.

So the question is, what NBA player do you think he can replicate as far as success goes? My ideal scenario is for Monroe to develop into Pau Gasol. A good offensive player, good passer, solid rebounder...just a very good 2nd piece to a championship team. I think the path Monroe is on, he can become that type of player sooner than later.

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I think we are looking at Greggers ceiling right now. Other than continuing to add consistency to his jumper, I don't know where else he can improve offensively. Greg is like a robot, a few of the posters on this forum had him as a slightly more productive Brad Miller, and here he is, all robotic and all, fulfilling that. 16.2 9.8 3.0 with no blocks.

I am glad we have him.

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That's craziness...there's no way he's reached his ceiling in his 2nd year. He's only 21. He could see 20 10 5 as he continues to improve and if he can make a leap we could see 23 12 5 particularly if Brandon Knight improves and can take pressure off him as teams start to clamp down on him.

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yeah totally. He sucks.

But that isn't what I said is it? You're just trying to pick a fight now. You don't even get to watch most of the games and rely on box scores to form your opinion.

I said he is good on offense. In fact if he never improves at all he is already better on offense than I ever thought he would be. But my critique of him on defense is pretty accurate. He has quick hands and will get quite a few steals. But as of right now he couldn't block a shot to save his life. He will never be that big man in the middle to intimidate and alter shots.

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I think he has a high ceiling. In terms of his defense, I think Del is pretty much on target what Monroe is right now. You hope his offensive contributions will exceed his rather mediocre defensive contributions. For the most part, they probably do.

But that's the side of the court I want to see improve next year. Of course he can improve this year, but right now, I'm just enjoying watching him progress week-to-week offensively.

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That's craziness...there's no way he's reached his ceiling in his 2nd year. He's only 21. He could see 20 10 5 as he continues to improve and if he can make a leap we could see 23 12 5 particularly if Brandon Knight improves and can take pressure off him as teams start to clamp down on him.

You think he is going to put up Kevin Garnett in his prime numbers potentially?

I think he gets better, but as the team grows, his numbers will not.

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Monroe is a sponge, he's improved across the board from this offseason, jumper better, handles better, aggressiveness better, free throw shooting better. He's developed a quick first step and I think is even more athletic if that is possible. I don't think he's as bad as guys make him out to be on Defense, he establishes good position and is crafty with his hands.

Edited by DrWho17
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You think he is going to put up Kevin Garnett in his prime numbers potentially?

I think he gets better, but as the team grows, his numbers will not.

the question was what his ceiling could be. I think he's already practically a 17 10 guy at 21. It's. Pretty inevitable that he'll be a 20 10 guy. The question is if he'll make a leap beyond that or not.

I also don't think it's out of the question that he can improve defensively if he has a Tyson Chandler type big man in the middle. No, he'll never be a shot blocker but hopefully he can grow to not be a liability.

Edited by DaBishop
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As far as his defense goes, while shot blocking and length is by far the best way for a big man to make an impact defensively, it is not the be all and end all. There are a lot of power forwards in this league who like to play on the perimeter. Monroe has the lateral quickness to guard those guys. He hedges hard on pick roles, has quick hands, and never stops hustling. So while he will never be an impact player defensively, I do believe he has the potential to be solid. But I do think he needs a shot blocker next to him.

Offensively, Monroe has proven me wrong. His development has come much quicker than I expected and I think if he develops a jump shot, he has the potential to be a 20 and 10 guy on a yearly basis.

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Regarding Monroe's defense, lets keep in mind we literally have no one on our roster who is an above average defender. When you are working with average to below average defenders, it makes you look a lot worse. Our guards are getting beat off the dribble, our power forwards are undersized and outmatched and Monroe is often the biggest loser because of it. With improved defense in front on him, I think he can significantly improve. I am confident he will improve his positioning and weak side defense over time based on the way he has learned to play offense.

If he can establish himself as a guy putting up 20/10 every year, you are essentially building your team around a young Pau Gasol. I am liking that, especially because we are getting a lottery pick in a big-man heavy draft.

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Regarding Monroe's defense, lets keep in mind we literally have no one on our roster who is an above average defender. When you are working with average to below average defenders, it makes you look a lot worse. Our guards are getting beat off the dribble, our power forwards are undersized and outmatched and Monroe is often the biggest loser because of it. With improved defense in front on him, I think he can significantly improve. I am confident he will improve his positioning and weak side defense over time based on the way he has learned to play offense.

If he can establish himself as a guy putting up 20/10 every year, you are essentially building your team around a young Pau Gasol. I am liking that, especially because we are getting a lottery pick in a big-man heavy draft.

I don't think I agree with that at all. The Bulls were the best defensive team in the league last year and are 2nd this year. Carlos Boozer is still a terrible defender.

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the question was what his ceiling could be. I think he's already practically a 17 10 guy at 21. It's. Pretty inevitable that he'll be a 20 10 guy. The question is if he'll make a leap beyond that or not.

I also don't think it's out of the question that he can improve defensively if he has a Tyson Chandler type big man in the middle. No, he'll never be a shot blocker but hopefully he can grow to not be a liability.

Well, I don't think he is a 17/10 player right now, he has been for 10-15 games. If we had this convo 3 games ago we'd be talking about a 14/8 player. I wish I was that optimistic. I mean that sincerely. As this team acquires more legit scoring options and talent, especially up front, Monroe, who is not a dominant post scorer, will probably become a better all around player, but not necessarily see his numbers go through the roof. I think 16/9 fits his skill set, and that is not bad at all. If I thought he had the natural skill of Kevin Love, I'd make that comp, but he is not as skilled with the ball as Love is.

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I don't think I agree with that at all. The Bulls were the best defensive team in the league last year and are 2nd this year. Carlos Boozer is still a terrible defender.

The Pistons have 0 good defensive players (with the exception of Ben Wallace, who is hardly that anymore). Not a single guard is a good defensive player. Not a single forward is a good defensive player. Monroe is being forced to cover the mistakes of 4 other players every single night. Defense is a lot about what your teammates do, along with what you do. If you put Monroe on the Bulls I am confident he would be considered an adequate defender. Given time, he could be good.

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The Pistons have 0 good defensive players (with the exception of Ben Wallace, who is hardly that anymore). Not a single guard is a good defensive player. Not a single forward is a good defensive player. Monroe is being forced to cover the mistakes of 4 other players every single night. Defense is a lot about what your teammates do, along with what you do. If you put Monroe on the Bulls I am confident he would be considered an adequate defender. Given time, he could be good.

That isn't how good defense works in the NBA. It starts in the paint. Good interior defense makes good perimeter defenders. Good perimeter defenders do not make good interior defenders.

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As far as your Bulls comment goes. Swap him for Boozer and he will still be a below average defender. But nobody will care since Noah is there next to him doing the defensive work for him. Swap Monroe for Noah and pair him with Boozer...bad news for the Bulls.

Its why what Nastradamus said is so correct. Put AD or another defensive minded big next to Monroe and you are good to go.

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That isn't how good defense works in the NBA. It starts in the paint. Good interior defense makes good perimeter defenders. Good perimeter defenders do not make good interior defenders.

Not completely true. If you watch the defense of our guards they are being bullied and taken off the dribble, or just taking bad angles/making dumb mistakes on almost every play, forcing Monroe to get off his man and help out. A defense is completely thrown off when guards are not able to stay between their man and the basket, and Monroe is suffering because of it.

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Article on Greg's season so far from SI.com . I bolded the comments on his defense which I agree with.

Big man Greg Monroe has quietly become a force in Detroit

Greg Monroe has rebounded 14.4 percent of Detroit's, a rebounding rate that would have ranked him No. 1 in the league last season. (Mike McGinnis/Cal Sport Media)

It’s early, and his team somehow ranks 28th or worse in both offensive and defensive efficiency, but after Thursday night, it can no longer be ignored: Greg Monroe is having a monster season. The numbers are ridiculous:

• Monroe is fifth in the league in Player Efficiency Rating, and one of the guys ahead of him (Manu Ginobili) will soon fall off the leader board due to a lack of minutes.

• He is shooting 59.7 percent from the floor. Only Nene shot better last season.

• He has rebounded 14.4 percent of Detroit’s misses, an offensive rebounding rate that would have led the entire league last season.

• He has assisted on 19.4 percent of Detroit’s baskets while on the floor Among players 6-foot-9 or taller, only Hedo Turkoglu and Brad Miller posted higher assist rates last season. One of those guys isn’t a traditional big man, and the other barely eked out 1000 minutes.

There are caveats beyond the fact that the 2-9 Pistons have been miserable overall. They rank in the bottom third of the league in assist rate, and they have recently been starting a rookie point guard (Brandon Knight) with an assist rate lower than Monroe’s. They also have Rodney Stuckey and Ben Gordon to handle and pass, but neither is an elite distributor. Someone has to rack up the assists, and Monroe, a good passer dating to his time at Georgetown, has filled the void.

You could make the same argument about Monroe’s rebounding, since the rest of the big-man minutes have been going to two so-so rebounders (Jason Maxiell and Jonas Jerebko, the latter a bit of a tweener) and Ben Wallace, still a very good rebounder, but one who doesn’t play much anymore. Detroit ranks as an average offensive rebounding team and a below-average defensive rebounding team, so someone has to grab the rebounds Detroit does manage to snare, and that someone is Monroe.

But you can’t ignore what a force Monroe has been on offense, and how he is getting those points and assists this season compared to last. Monroe is attempting twice as many mid-range jumpers as he did last season, and while you don’t want any big with his skills around the rim to get too jumper-happy (hi, Josh Smith), Monroe made just 12 shots from 10 feet and out all of last season, according to Hoopdata. He’s made nine such shots already this season. Any floor-spacing from a big man is helpful, and Monroe has already used the threat of his improved mid-range shot to build a face-up, off-the-dribble game. In torching the Bucks for 32 points and 16 boards on Thursday, Monroe gave Andrew Bogut fits with a face-up attack of jab steps, spin moves and sudden bursts to the basket.

Monroe isn’t explosive as a vertical leaper, but he has nimble feet, and he’s fast moving forward in the air even if he doesn’t jump high. He can squeeze through a small space and have that lefty layup on the glass before your bigger, more explosive center can quite reach the ball.

Then there’s this: Monroe is 26-of-51 (51 percent) on shots from post-up chances this season, according to the stat-tracking service Synergy Sports. He was just 29-of-80 (36 percent) on post-up shots in all of last season, when he relied on offensive rebounds and cuts for exactly half of his offensive chances. In other words, Monroe was a bit of a scavenger last season, even if there is art and skill in grabbing offensive rebounds and sensing where, how and when to cut into open spaces. Monroe has good court sense in that way, and he excelled last season in making himself available when his defender shifted away from him.

You can make a fine NBA career out of being a high-level big man scavenger with speed and touch. You can be a star if you add elite scoring ability and refined passing to those scavenging skills. That’s what Monroe has done on offense so far this season. Only about 28 percent of his offensive chances have come from cuts and offensive boards combined. Monroe is finding the right balance between individual and team, and both he and the Pistons will be better for it.

The obvious area of concern is defense, where Monroe is going through the same growing pains every young big man in the NBA experiences. He has the tools — those quick, shuffling feet, long arms, etc. — to be a good team defender in pick-and-rolls and other situations, but he’s not there yet. He can struggle to work his way through screens under the hoop, and he has been a part of some glaring rotation breakdowns.

He’s not getting a ton of help with this stuff, either. Detroit’s guards, especially Ben Gordon, are among the least enthusiastic help defenders in the league when it comes to those cross-screens under the basket, and when Maxiell and Monroe run at the same player during a series of rotations, the blame doesn’t fall with Monroe every time.

Team defense in the NBA is really hard. Kevin Garnett has talked repeatedly over the last few seasons about the importance of having two big men grow comfortable defending together — communicating, learning each other’s preferences, understanding when to switch and how to rotate. The Pistons and Monroe are far from this ideal.

But the raw material is here, and Monroe looks to be stouter in the post; opponents have shot just 11-of-33 against him in post-up chances this season after torching him for 50 percent shooting in the post last season, according to Synergy.

That represents progress, and it will come it fits and starts — and with setbacks — on both ends of the floor. But Monroe is one of the nice stories of the season so far.

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Not completely true. If you watch the defense of our guards they are being bullied and taken off the dribble, or just taking bad angles/making dumb mistakes on almost every play, forcing Monroe to get off his man and help out. A defense is completely thrown off when guards are not able to stay between their man and the basket, and Monroe is suffering because of it.

Almost all guards in the NBA are taken off the dribble. Thats just how the rules are set up right now. That is why I said a good defense takes away the jumper and funnels all penetration to the big men in the middle who can step in and take a charge, block or alter a shot.

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